I just completed the 4DP test for the first time and got the test results. Now thinking how best to improve these metrics and understanding if they were accurate in the first place. I was wasted at the end, especially after the AC and MAP, so I’m confident the metrics were good (even if not great yet!), but would have been better to use clipless pedals?
the numbers seems relatively low.
What kind of pedals do typical riders use with the 4DP test? I expect to continue using flat pedals, but should I consider retesting with the clipless pedals? I assume it isn’t useful to compare the two test results if I do.
If you plan on using flats, use flats to test.
Pointless generating numbers that don’t represent the use case.
You might get slightly better numbers with clipless (you might not), but they won’t be hugely different and any differences that are caused through the use of pedals you won’t be using to train with are counter-productive anyway.
Don’t worry about “relatively low” numbers, the testing protocol is more thorough than elsewhere anyway and numbers mean nothing outside setting training levels anyway, really.
Get into a plan and see how you go.
If you were ‘wasted at the end’ you did the test right. As to the numbers you got, they are yours and yours alone. Don’t compare them to nobody but you. What you are looking for is improvement in those numbers.
As to testing, if you are going to be riding flat pedals, test with flat pedals. You might find that Elements of Style was written for those using clipless pedals, but there are gains to be made by maintaining pressure all around the pedal stroke.
It’s not a trivial investment (you need shoes, cleats and pedals), but I think it makes cycling a lot more comfortable. If you have a friend with the same size feet and neither of you is grossed out by the idea of your wearing his shoes for a little while, you could try them out.
It will be less of an adventure on a trainer than outside. My first ride with clipless pedals included stopping at a pedestrian crossing, forgetting to unclip as I slowed down, and falling over sideways (while at a deadstop) in front of 50 strangers. Everyone I know had a similar experience, but usually with a smaller audience. You learn to unclip automatically after a couple of those.